Imagining Mad Max’s Furiosa as a POC

By: Amanda Wallace

This commentary is going to include some spoilers for the film Mad Max: Fury Road. If you haven’t seen it yet: what are you waiting for?


If you’ve seen the film Mad Max: Fury Road you’ve probably gotten excited about Imperator Furiosa, the tough, bald-headed driver of the War Rig played by the indomitable Charlize Theron. Even before Fury came out, there was talk that Furiosa stole the show from the movie’s namesake and there’s a certain level of validity to that idea.

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Waffle Bites: Favorite Female Developers

In our second Waffle Bite celebrating Nation Women’s Month, the gang goes gaga over some of their favorite female game developers.

To start things out, Kate talks about Jennifer Hepler known for her work at Bioware (0:50), Emily Carrol known for her webcomics and also half the dev team for The Yawhg (2:20), and Tanya Short the creative director at Kitfox Games(2:55).

Next up, Tim fanboys over Brenda Romero who has been attached to too many major projects to list (4:25), and then raves about Lizzie Magie, the original mind behind Monopoly (7:22).

Finally, Seth reminisces about 90’s adventure games in his discussion of Jen Jansen (10:05), extols the virtues of Kim Swift who helped give us games like Portal and Left For Dead 11:30) and talks Aristotelian virtues while applauding Sheri Graner Ray (12:07).

Since we obviously couldn’t end the podcast without talking over fifteen minutes, we start a discussion on Auteur theory in regards to gaming, Kate’s hatred of Hideo Kojima, and the difficulty of navigating fame as a female developer.

Jupiter Ascending: The Re-Gendered Space Opera

By: Amanda Wallace

There’s a reason that you need to see Jupiter Ascending, and it’s not because it’s a “fascinating mess” or that “it was a hot-ass mess.”

The strength of Jupiter Ascending is complicated, because it doesn’t rely on the main actors or even the fairy tale plot.The shoehorned romantic sub-plot promises to be little more than eye-rollingly bad (“I love dogs.”), the fight sequences are robotic, and the world is so crazy that it is more suited for an HBO series than a two hour film. Yet despite this (and not because of it) the movie’s strength is its ability to subvert expectations of traditionally gendered action/science fiction movies.

The tropes and characters may have been re-skinned for this space opera, but we immediately recognize their roles. We have our hero, well into the opening stages of her journey, complete with a magical facet that makes her more important than anyone else in the galaxy. She’s joined by a grizzled veteran, encounters an oedipal brother, and she eventually must face down the evil queen.These are all characters and tropes that we are familiar with, aware of, but they are subverted as surely as the laws of physics.

MilaKunisJupiterJupiter Jones as Hero

I’ve heard people repeatedly knock Jupiter Ascending because Jupiter is saved by Kaine’s alien werewolf angel multiple times, but that’s a narrow view of the story. In this film Jupiter Jones is our Luke Skywalker, another hero that arose from inauspicious beginnings.

In A New Hope, Luke Skywalker is a whining farmboy who survives, not because of any particular skillset he may possess, but because of the people he is allied with. How many times alone Obi Wan save Luke’s life before they’ve even left Tattooine? Similarly wolf-boy Kaine aides January Jones through the first act of her hero’s journey.

Kaine, despite his muscles and action sequences, does very little to move the plot forward, often dealing with Jupiter’s scraps. For example towards the end, Kaine is relegated to facing off against a second tier villain and moving Jupiter’s family to safety while Jupiter herself faces off against the Big Bad.


So, just because help comes in one super attractive package doesn’t mean that Jupiter is a damsel in distress, a trope that is all too familiar in American popular culture. Instead the movie showcases Jupiter’s heroic arc. By the end of the movie it’s Jupiter, not Kaine, who faces off against the villain, and it is Jupiter’s existence that draws the rest of the characters in orbit.

Kaine Wise as Manic Pixie Dream Girl

If you’re unfamiliar with the term, TV Tropes has a pretty fitting description:

She’s stunningly attractive, high on life, full of wacky quirks and idiosyncrasies (generally including childlike playfulness and a tendency towards petty crime), often with a touch of wild hair dye. She’s inexplicably obsessed with our stuffed-shirt hero, on whom she will focus her kuh-razy antics until he learns to live freely and love madly.

A MPDG lives for the main character and the stunningly attractive Kaine lives to help Jupiter reach her goals at the exclusion of his own reach their goals at the exclusion of his own. Of course, aside from his desire for wings and a disdain for nobles, Kaine doesn’t have much in the way of life goals.

He does have a pair of rockets boots though, which in addition to the wolf DNA in his lineage make Kaine the quirkiest MPDG you’ve never seen before or since. Most importantly though, he’s inexplicably attracted to Jupiter, despite the fact that they have the chemistry of a wet blanket.


The movie delights in eroticizing the male form, and it does this most frequently with Kaine, played by Channing Tatum, an actor known for his roles as eye candy. The camera treats Kaine like he’s a popsicle it wants to lick. His presence is eye candy as surely as Natalie Portman’s casting in Garden State, except instead of asking us to listen to the Shins we watch him skate around on rocket boots.

Balam Abraxas as Evil Queen

In the world of Jupiter Ascending, Balam Abaraxas is Jupiter’s son, yet he comes off like her evil step-mother. It’s clear that he is partially modeled after Charlize Theron’s portrayal of the evil queen in Snow White and the Huntsman. Her shrieking rage and cold power, tied inextricably to her aloof sexuality  is a mold for the trope.

Part of the parallel drawn between Redmayne and Theron is due to Redmayne’s performance, a serpentine and slick villain who spend the movie alternatively speaking in harsh whispers and angry yells. Another key ingredient to Balam’s role as evil queen is simply that the role of evil king has already been taken by Titus, Jupiter’s son (and Balam’s brother) that attempts to wed her. Yet an evil queen is defined by her displacement of the traditional, “good”, power structure.


One way this displacement takes place is through the infinite youth that both Redmayne’s Balam and Theron’s Queen enjoy. In Snow White and the Huntsman the audience is given a glimpse of Theron emerging nude from a milk bath, her vitality (and sex appeal) restored through ill-gotten means. In Jupiter Ascending we are treated to a similar scene where Balam Abraxas emerges from a bath (fueled by billions of human deaths) looking youthful and, well, hot.

In Balam’s world, his Empress mother (and her subsequent desire for death) is that “good” and natural order, and it is her will that he is subverting long after her death.

The Bottom Line

Jupiter Ascending is a high camp romp, a journey into a fully realized world that only the Wachowski’s could have built. It’s ridiculous and fantastical and full of life, and for any one of those reasons it would be worth viewing. But what really, truly sets the movie apart from the most recent fare of adapted YA is how it challenges expectations of science fiction. How it challenges the gendered roles that so often dominate popular culture.

Don’t watch Jupiter Ascending because it’s a hot mess. Watch it because it’s a welcome surprise.

Amanda Wallace is an amazing associate editor for, and runs her own websites Storycade and Wasabi Crunk that look at niche aspects of the gaming world (interactive fiction and indie games respectively). The best way to follow her work is via twitter, @barelyconcealed, where you’ll find great articles and witty banter. 

Waffling Around Games Ep. 3: Magical Diary and Long Live the Queen

This month in Waffling Around Games, our podcast which combines the brilliant minds behind Acagameia and Feminism & Geekery, we take a look at two visual novels: Magical Diary and Long Live the Queen

If you have no idea what a visual novel is (don’t be ashamed, it’s a sub-genre within a sub-genre, within a sub-genre) check out this great explanation from Rockmandash on Kotaku. If you want more in-depth 

Other highlights include: 

  • An eloquent explanation of genre by Seth
  • Tim’s epiphany about abusive relationships – derived from playing a lady in Magical Diary
  • Cursing! I still don’t know how to bleep people, so I just left it all in. Because Damien.
  • Painful, awkward giggling from me as I continue to be embarrassed that an NPC manipulated my real life emotions. Because Damien.
  • Btw, my review of Magical Diary explains the whole Damien thing, but spoilers!

If Magical Diary or Long Live the Queen sound like your cup of tea, they are both available on Steam. Or, if you’ve already played those games and you’re looking to expand your visual novel library, here’s a list of games you might want to snag

Don’t Say the “F” Word: Wonder Woman Creative Team avoids the word “Feminist”

The current run of Wonder Woman written by Brian Azzerello is not something I am currently reading. Someone explained to me that they retconned her origin story, I didn’t like it, so I gave up on the whole thing. The news that a new creative team would be taking over with issue 36 was extremely welcome. This week DC gave us the announcement many of us have been looking forward to: the new creative team!

The husband/wife duo of David and Meredith Finch will begin their run in November with a new focus on Wondy’s humanity, dealing with the Amazons, relationships with fellow heroes, and how she juggles all these things at once. Which basically sounds like a re-hash of Sex and the City to me – but I am looking forward to anything that strays from Azarello’s pantheon focused run.

For her part, Meredith Finch is looking forward to getting her hands on Wonder Woman and things she has a lot to bring to the table.

“Women tend to react in a different way, and I can bring some of that reactionary (thinking), going from your heart sometimes more than from your head. I hope that between the two of us, we’ll be able to bring that balance so she’s got a really complex character as we go forward.”

I’m not particularly fond of the idea of adding less logic to Wonder Woman’s character. One of the things i have always appreciated about Diane is her ability to think things through, her strong valuation of the truth, and her dedication to just rather than simply vengeance. In short, there’s a reason Diane doesn’t often think with her heart over her head, and that is part of what makes the characters to me.

However, it does make business sense to include a female writer on the team. Meredith herself points out that, ” if you’re going to try to attract that female market that you appeal to them on every level — your writing demographic reflects the demographic of your readership.” Adding more stereo-typically feminine markers to Diane is perhaps one way to endear her to newer readers.

I’m willing to give the Finches the benefit of the doubt on the majority of these issues and wait until their first story comes out to make judgement. At least I was until reading this interview with Comic Book Resources. When asked what he’s most excited to touch on with the book David Finch responds,

Really, from where I come from, and we’ve talked about this a lot, we want to make sure it’s a book that treats her as a human being first and foremost, but is also respectful of the fact that she represents something more. We want her to be a strong — I don’t want to say feminist, but a strong character. Beautiful, but strong.

I appreciate the fact that the Finches are attempting to humanize Wonder Woman. She’s always been a wildly unapproachable character to me, and I think she needs a good re-vamp in that area. However, that statement coupled with this image of Wonder Woman that Finch has previously drawn, make me seriously question this creative team before they’ve even had their chance.

Art by David Finch

Art by David Finch

The Wondy in the picture above does not look particularly strong to me. Instead, while she appears to have strong thighs, Finch has been careful to demonstrate that Wonder Woman has a thigh-gap and if Wonder Woman’s arms were really as muscular as they’re drawn in this image her bust would be much smaller. DC Women Kicking Ass points out that one of David Finch’s previous portraits of Wonder Woman went viral – as people parodied the ridiculous pose Finch drew her in.


The interviews and the art make me fell like this new story is going to be super heroine re-hash of Sex and the City where we’ll see if Diane can really manage to have it all. Post-feminism at its finest. While Wonder Woman definitely needs a flaw or two to add a certain level of humanity, I’m not sure this team is right for the job. I’ll personally be continuing my Wonder Woman boycott – at least until this amazing collection from IDW comes out.

The Internet Reacts to GiantBombs New (White Male) Hire

Giantbomb is one of the many popular gaming websites around the internet, and one of the few that was recently hiring a new editor. It’s tough to break into the games journalism world, and many hopeful applicants send a resume off with fingers crossed, dreaming dreams of health care, steady pay, and an official job title. Last night, the new hire was anounced: Dan Ryckert (formerly of GameInformer) and the internet went crazy.

First of all, let me be clear in saying that none of the following is meant to disparage Dan Ryckert, his work, his qualifications, or his person. From a quick google search it’s clear that he has been a part of the game journo industry for many years, and would naturally be a solid candidate . However, by hiring yet another white male, GiantBomb opened itself up to a large amount of criticism from talented female and minority writers who had also applied for the job.

The first part of this stemmed from many people’s assumption that Dan Ryckert was the best person for the job, and that none of the other applicants (women & minorities) must have had the same qualifications that he did.

That’s when the abuse began, as random trolls on twitter decided that this was a party they just couldn’t help but crash. Lady game journos getting pissed about lack of real journo jobs and lack of diversity hires? Let’s face it – they were just asking to be trolled, amiright? (THE ANSWER IS NO. NO ONE IS EVERY ASKING FOR IT.)

That’s just a few little tidbits. I could scour the internet for more trolling, but honestly I don’t want to bring that on myself anymore than I have to. The problem with all of this, as one person pointed out, that the majority of metrics that are used to justify hiring decisions heavily favor people who fit the same profile.For example Ryckert has previous experience at another large games journo place, which might garner him more respect from the hiring committee than someone writing equally excellent gaming articles at a website that does not have a strong gaming focus.

In her piece “A GDC Epilogue: Powerful Games Journalist Men I have Met” Maddy Myers discusses some of the biases she has faced while attempting to “make it” in the games industry.

I heard through the grapevine that there was a full-time gig opening up at a Big Videogame Site. So, I sent some tentative messages to someone I knew who worked there. I heard almost immediately that there was going to be no vacancy, and that the last time there had been one, this person had suggested my name to Powerful Editor Man. But, Powerful Editor Man had dismissed me because, he said, I mostly write about “gender stuff.”

While people familiar with Myers work know that her body of work encompasses far more than just “gender stuff” the fact that she is so easily dismissed for that in the first place is problematic. A common critique in the games industry is the lack of diverse representation, both in-games and out of games and one way to rectify this is to rock the boat with more diversity hires at gaming websites.

While it is assumed that hiring someone who primarily writes about “Gender stuff” will rock a website’s boat and offend many of the reader-base – do most websites really want to attract a clientele that would threaten female games journos? Clearly money is at steak, but more than money there is a chance to help make the gaming community a better place for everyone, and a chance to encourage more publications to take the chance on diverse hires.

When game journalist sites which are typically dominated by white men continue to hire white men with similar backgrounds and qualifications as themselves, they’re doing the community and the other qualified applicants – with slightly less relatable experience (but nonetheless qualified)- a disservice. Hopefully we can finally reach a point where this sort of practice is decried by more than just my tiny feminist/queer slice of Twitter, but by the gaming community as a whole…’cause I can’t even imagine a place or time where this won’t be a problem.


Playing Subversively: The Wolf Among Us and Non-violence

Thanks to the Steam Summer Sale, I finally snagged a copy of Telltale Games’ Wolf Among, an episodic interactive adventure game that draws from the Fables series by Bill Willingham at Vertigo. The game sets you down in a world where story-book characters exist and the playable character, Bigby Wolf (Big Bad Wolf) is the enforcer of the peace.

The first episode throws you into a domestic dispute between a pretty woman (prostitute) and the Woodsman (of the Little Red Riding Hood story). After I attempted to stop the fight through words, the woodsmen ended up attacking me anyway. I figured the Woodsman and the Wolf probably don’t have the best history, and the fight was unpreventable. However that didn’t stop me from peacefully participating.

the-wolf-among-us-episode-1-2Woody kept throwing punches, and I just kept taking them. Not fighting back, or even dodging when he came at me with his axe. I quickly learned that was a mistake as the “game over” screen illuminated my screen. While staring at the screen, I started wondering how much non-violence I could get away with while not triggering the my character’s death. I re-loaded the fight, this time dodging attacks but still not fighting back, and promptly died again.

The next time, I defended myself and only fought back once Woody brought his axe to our fist-fight. we flew out the window, landed on a car, and the pretty woman plunged an axe into Woody’s head. It felt like victory. I ended up throwing 1-2 blows in total, and managed to continue the scene without dying. I patted myself on the back for a job well done, and finished the episode without too many altercations.

Over the course of two episodes,  I learned that as long as I were a good detective – using Bigby’s mind over his fists – it was easy to get out of most situations without resorting to hitting someone.The game would punish me for not defending myself in violent situations I did not start – but it wouldn’t force me to go on the offensive. Using this knowledge I was able to walk a fine line between peaceful resistance and defending myself with the occasional punch – all while feeling like I was getting away with something.

Reasons for Non-Violence

As Alex Ray Corriea points out in her piece about the female gaze and Telltale Games, the continued presence of Snow white in Wolf Among Us encourages players to take non-violent routes.

We view ourselves, the character we are controlling, through the eyes of the nearest female character… in The Wolf Among Us we want a woman we admire to love us… And as we struggle with Bigby to retain his humanity despite dealing with some truly despicable characters, we measure his success in keeping it against Snow’s reactions.

While making Snow happy is a fringe benefit of my play style, I really don’t care whether she approves or disapproves of me. In the game’s presentation of Snow’s character, I disapprove of her. She frequently displays an unwillingness to get her hands dirty and take meaningful action on behalf of the Fables she is trying to help. She comes off as a naive little white-girl (liberal feminist) who hasn’t yet discovered that not all problems can be solved by good-intentions and politics.  In other words, she reminds me of myself, albeit 6-8 years ago.

My lack of violence was instead a rebellion against the gaming industry that uses violence and fighting as a central game technique for the majority of its games. Repeatedly dying in order to test the limits of peaceful play was my rebellion against an industry that never gives me the option to talk with my mouth instead of my fists or guns. And I felt like I was getting away with something, subversively playing until I saw that a majority of players had done the same thing.

The Wolf Among Us Player Choices

When I reached the “Player’s Choices” screen at the end of episode two – a screen that tells you what percentage of people made the same decisions as yourself –  I noticed that well over 50% of players had also chosen to take the non-violent route. They didn’t torture anyone they had arrested, and they had attempted to end the fight with as little friendly fire as possible. The wind whooshed right out of my sails.

By implementing the moralizing female gaze through Snow White, The Wolf Among Us actively encourages players to forego violent tactics. My non-violent play style, intended as subversion, instead becomes a part of a larger narrative. Instead of a rebellion, the choice to play peacefully gets wrapped up in gender. A woman is present so you must tone down Bigby’s natural manly (re: violent) urges demonstrating that perhaps non-violent play still isn’t masculine enough for the games industry to take seriously without an accompanying female companion.

Still, it’s really nice not to have to hurt people all the time.


Fans Leverage #DCYOU To Ask DC For Poison Ivy Comics

This week, DC Comics announced their DCYou campaign that is promoting DC’s post-Convergence line-up of books. If that sentence felt like nonsense to you, let me put it another way: DCYou is a marketing campaign trying to grab readers who aren’t interested in DC’s big upcoming crossover event. So they’re trying to hype the books that the cross-over event will lead to.

Honestly, this wouldn’t be newsworthy if DC hadn’t included the word “diverse” in their ad campaign. There’s been a wave of momentum in comics pushing for diverse comics, i.e. comics that aren’t helmed by white men, fictional or otherwise. Most of DC’s titles have dudes on the covers, and most of DC’s titles have dude creators, so it’s slightly disconcerting to see their new line-up touted as diverse. As the ever on-point Janelle Asselin says at Comics Alliance:

You don’t throw the word “diverse” into a press release and then fail to include more of your diverse characters and creators. But then… let’s look at the numbers. As Tim Hanley (ever regular with his Numbercrunching) recently posted, the July 2015 solicits that went out last month marked DC’s lowest month of the year in terms of women credited in the solicitation copy. Obviously, more women does not automatically equal diversity, but one would hope that a company that has created a campaign all about “the fans” and “stories for everyone” would actually hire more people who are representative of different groups.

So yeah, people are definitely giving DC the side-eye over this move.

For one group of fans though, the DCYou campaign has given them a chance to ask DC for more diverse comics. Using the hashtag #PoisonIvyLeague and #DCYou many comic fans have taken to twitter to petition DC to make good on their promise of diversity, and give them a comic for eco-activist/villain Poison Ivy.


Considering that both Catwoman and Harley Quinn currently have their own solo titles, it’s not far-fetched for fans to request one for Poison Ivy. The three sometimes-villainesses often appear together in comics (like Gotham City Sirens), and many comic readers wonder why Ivy is the only character of the trio not getting any attention.

Since DC revamped its universe in 2011 with the New 52, Pamela Isley a.k.a. Poison Ivy has been briefly seen in Birds of Prey, Detective Comics, and Rotworld, but those storylines took place in 2012. Since then, she’s made a few appearances in Batman: Li’l Gotham (which doesn’t count for reasons), Sensation Comics #32, Batman #40 and the Batgirl Annual #2. Not to mention the current Harley Quinn book where the overly sexualized nature of Harley and Ivy’s friendship has made some fans intensely uncomfortable.

A handful of appearances isn’t enough to satisfy Poison Ivy fans though. While fans realize that Ivy is a more difficult sell than Catwoman or Harley Quinn, they’re still pushing for stories that look at Ivy through a more modern lens, less villainess and more misunderstood feminism/activist. In their own words, here’s what some fans have to say.

This would be a great opportunity for DC to prove that the company is devoted to fans and diversity, but it’s hard to have hope considering she hasn’t seen a solo title in her 49 years of existence. All hope is not lost for Poison Ivy fans, however, as she is scheduled to lead a team of heroes and villains in Justice League United #11 and #12. It’s a far cry from a solo series, but this could be just the vehicle Poison Ivy needs to get re-established outside of the Amanda Connor/Jimmy Palmiotti Harley Quinn book. Baby steps!

Review: Heathen #1 by Natasha Alterici


If you’ve followed this site for any length of time, you know that here at Feminism/Geekery, we truly appreciate a good lady-led title. I’ll read the first issue of almost anything with a female protagonist though unfortunately that doesn’t mean that everything I read is good. That said, in the case of Heathen #1 created by Natasha Alterici, I not only adored every frame but truly appreciated this breathtaking look at Norse mythology with a lady-centric twist.

Heathen follows a young Viking woman named Aydis, in her attempt to challenge Odin’s reigns by enlisting the support of the banished valkyrie Brynhild. With so many comics attempting to take on Viking source material, Valhalla Mad, Loki Ragnarok and Roll, and many others, it’s rare to see a title leaving behind characters like Loki and Thor in favor for their female counterparts. I would most likely love any new, female perspective on covering the topic of Norse mythology, but Heathen #1 is something special. The first issue not only manages to dramatically tell the tale of the downfall of Brynhild, but gives us the motivation behind Aydis’s quest to awaken the Valkyrie. (Minor Spoilers below this picture of Saga and Aydis)


Aydis is in trouble with her village for kissing a girl, the punishment for which is either marriage or death. Instead, Aydis’s father helps her choose another path, pretending to kill her so that Aydis might live to follow her own dreams. This revelation of Aydis’s sexual orientation is handled in a straightforward, no-nonsense way. When Liv, the girl that kissed Aydis, expresses regret for this kiss, Aydis just smiles and says “I’m not”. Honestly, aside from Young Avengers it’s rare to see a queer character so sure of herself in such a no-nonsense way. Aydis knows who she is, and she knows what she wants to do and her drive fuels the pace of the first issue.

HeathenScreenCapOf course, I would be remiss not to praise the art in addition to the narrative. The panels can’t contain Alterici’s frenetic lines, particularly in a brief fight scene between Aydis and a ferocious beast. The art flows viscerally from panel to panel in defiance, the lines are so dynamic that the page can barely contain them. There might be a handful of peaceful moments in the first issue, but even in those moments Alterici’s art pushes you forward. There is no peace for Aydis the exile, and the barren landscape reflects this beautifully. It ultimately reminds me of this variant cover by Fiona Staples for Red Sonja combined with the wonderful art Joelle Jones did for Helheim.

Unfortunately for you, currently this comic has only been released for Kickstarter backers, so if you want to read it you’ll have to wait for until Alterici announces a digitial/print edition for the masses. On the bright side, you can read Alterici’s short comic “Girls Don’t Like Dinosaurs” for free to tide you over until then. Heathen #1 definitely snagged me, hook line and sinker, so I’ll just be sitting here, twiddling my thumbs frantically until the second issue comes out.

Anna Kendrick as Indiana Jones: Should This Joke Become a Reality?

New non-profit organizations pop up all the time, particularly ones with celebrities. Red Nose Day is another such endeavor that aims to raise money for youth in poverty through making people laugh. To do so the organization is teaming up with NBC to launch a 3-hour long special on May 21, featuring tons of celebrities and (hopefully) tons of laughter. To give us a preview of what to expect, NBC released an Indiana Jones reboot spoof, complete with Anna Kendrick.

The re-telling of the famous grail scene from Indiana Jones and the Last Crusade didn’t make me laugh. In fact, when Anna Kendrick gets mad at the Templar for calling her cute I had a Meryl Streep moment. An educated woman calling a man out on sexist language? You go girl!

MerylStreepAfter I finished the video, I started wondering why I’ve never heard female names put forward for the position of the next Indiana Jones. Sure the series has been focused on a paragon of masculinity, Harison Ford. Guess what? Mad Max was similarly focused on a male sex-god and yet Mad Max: Fury Road takes the series in a new direction with Imperator Furiosa, played by Charlize Theron. We can make a new male actor (not Chris Pratt?) try to live up to the impossible standards of Indiana Jones, but we all saw what happened with Shia Lebeouf.

All things considered, Anna Kendrick as Indiana Jones just doesn’t do it for me, nor would most woman in the role of Indiana Jones. That said, I can still hold out hope for an equally adventurous woman archeologist to show up. Women are becoming the queens of our cultural movement and I hope that a future Indiana Jones movie will hop on the strong female protagonist bandwagon. We need an educated lady like Kendrick’s character to call bullsh** on Mr. Jones.


Rating DC’s New Male Bombshells

If you’re not familiar with DC Comics Bombshells here’s all you need to know: they’re cool. Also, the Bombshells were created as re-designs by Ant Lucia who turned popular heroines and villainesses into mid-century pin-ups. Both the statues, and the line of Bombshell variant covers from June, 2014 did so well that DC is bringing them back!

In fact, DC plans to release a digital-only Bombshell series written by Marguerite Bennet with art from Marguerite Savage in July, with print copies following in August. While that’s exciting (and a book that will make our Comic Picks of the Week list when it debuts) I’m more excited about the new BOMBSHELL COVERS WITH DUDES ON THEM. 

That’s right, amidst the over Bombshell variant covers that DC plans to release in August, a handful of them feature our first look at male pin-ups. I’m a big fan of the re-designed ladies – the retro fashion is quite detailed and well developed – but it’s nice that DC is acknowledging some of it’s fans want to see more man candy. So here are the covers, complete with ratings and commentary…because we’re not often given a chance to objectify male superheroes, and it would be a shame to pass on the opportunity.

ACTION COMICS #43 Cover by Ant Lucia 

Action Comics #43 Bombshell Cover

Rating: Are we visiting the circus?

I really enjoy the re-imagining of Superman here, particularly the mustache, but I also would have enjoyed seeing a solo Superman cover. Power Girl steals the show here, coming off as more macho and muscled than Superman himself. Don’t get me wrong, I appreciate being able to see Clark Kent’s arm musculature, but I think they still could have found a way to show some more skin.

AQUAMAN #43 Cover by Ant Lucia 

Aquaman #43 Bombshell Cover

Rating: My ovaries are screaming with joy!

I feel like the inspiration between this cover has to be a what if question. In this case, what if Popeye was actually sexy? Not that there is much of a challenge in making Aquaman sexy, his golden locks and swimmer’s body have made many girls despite Aquaman’s demeanor. For this cover, it’s Aquaman’s sincere yet sexy smile that gets me….although I reaally enjoy his pants too.

BATMAN #43 by Ant Lucia 

Batman #43 Bombshell Cover

Rating: Fail.

This doesn’t feel like a pin-up, and the clash between western/steampunk/detective imagery definitely doesn’t help. I’m not a fan of the “utility vest” though I would kill for a cape like this. All in all, I think Bombshell Batman just bombs, which is a shame. Bruce Wayne should get to feel pretty too sometimes.

GRAYSON #11 Cover by Emanuella Luppachino w/ Tomeu Morey 

Grayson #11 Bombshell Cover

Rating: Is it legal for me to think he’s cute? 

Dick Grayson has long been known as one of the hottest guys in DC…largely thanks to his butt. So it’s a bit disappointing that his famous derriere doesn’t really stick out in this pin-up because Grayson’s calves are bound for some reason. We do get to see Dick’s curves, as well as the sexy promise of his agility, but the face feels young to me. Too young for anyone to be thinking about how they could bind Grayson in different positions

GREEN LANTERN #43 Cover by Emanuella Luppachino with Tomeu Morey 

GreenLantern #43 Bombshell Cover


Look, pin-ups by definition are supposed to be sexy, which typically means pin-ups show some skin. This cover is a lovely reimagination of Hal Jordan and the Green Lantern Corps, but where’s the beef cake? He might be a pilot, but surely Hal Jordan doesn’t have to appear in full uniform all the time…

SINESTRO #14 Cover by Emanuella Luppachino with Tomeu Morey

Sinestro #14 Bombshell Cover

Rating: I would dance with him

Sinestro doesn’t need to take off clothes, his bad intentions are there for all to see. He’ll be nothing but trouble, but living life on the wild side of things seems so appealing when Sinestro is suggesting it. I never imagined a character like Sinestro could ever be depicted in an attractive way, but the artists sure proved me wrong with this cover. Dayum.

Waffling Around Games Ep. 5: Life is Strange Episode 1 and 2

After taking a short break from all our Waffle Bites, the Waffling Around Games crew is back!  The fifth WAG episodes takes on Life is Strange – created by Dontnod Entertainment and published by Square Enix – a game where teenage Max learns she can rewind time. In case you hadn’t noticed, Seth already wrote an article on Life is Strange and the “Perfect Victim” but we have plenty more to talk about!

Trigger Warning: Discussion of Suicide and Date Rape

This is one of our meatier podcasts, so here’s a breakdown of our main talking points:

  • 2:00 – What makes video games a unique medium when it comes to Trigger Warnings? How could they have been handled better in Life is Strange? Spoilers: we talk about the “big thing” that happens in Episode 2.
  • 8:40 – Discussion on who we chose to accuse at the end of Episode 2 and why.
  • 12:34 – Two rants from Seth and Kate, as well as a discussion of cliche vs. archetypes in the virtual reality of high school.
  • 17:23 – Can men write realistic women? We talk about the writing behind Life is Strange and discuss moments of clumsiness.
  • 24.53 – Nice guys always finish last (because they’re creepy). Seth and Tim take issue with Warren, who they claim is a bad example.
  • 29:10 The meat of the podcast otherwise known as a debate about the intersection of story and game mechanics through the characters of Chloe and Max. Also agency, but can fictional characters even have that?
  • 42.08 – There are totem poles, harmony, and spirit animals, but where are all the Native Americans in the game? Will Episodes 3-5 make this seem less like cultural appropriate?
  • 46:09 – Predictions about future episodes and farewells

We hope you enjoy and feel free to chime in with your own experiences!

Lady Thor’s Identity Revealed and It Is…..

First, obviously, spoilers. The identity of the new, female, Thor will be revealed in the pages of Thor #8…and also got leaked to the internet a few days early. So before we go any further, BE WARY OF SPOILERS.


So the woman worthy enough to wield Mjolnir is none other than Jane Foster. Apparently she was last seen in the comics refusing magical treatment for cancer, so we’re not really sure how she made it to the moon to nick Mjolnir. Comic logic! It’s not necessarily an exciting reveal, she’s one of several women who have wielded Mjolnir in the past, but it’s nice to have a new name to put with the heretofore hidden face.

Personally, I find this motivation to get caught up on the series. My attention had lapsed (I have a short attention span) but I’m interested in how they’ll weave Jane Foster into the mythology of Asgard, and more importantly, how Thor will take it. I’m hoping for something like this:



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